Sunday, February 1, 2009

Vintage 80's Clothing - Featured Collectible, Kinda

I've been meaning to do this post for a while now. Full disclosure - I was born in 1975, so the fact that stuff from the 80's is now considered vintage is still a little surreal to me. The return of 80's clothing isn't just surreal to me though, it's actually quite disturbing... Especially the prices some things go for! I can't help but occasionally amuse myself by looking at eBay auctions, and rolling my eyes.

The highest prices are achieved by sellers who specialize in clothing and have live models that they "style" - hair, makeup, accessories, the whole bit. If I tried to buy some ugly 80's dress off the thrift store rack, throw it up on Boobs McGee, my torso mannequin, and list it next to my dinnerware - well, if it even sold at all, I'm sure it wouldn't sell for much.

So let's take a peek at some of the things that are currently at auction right now, with ridiculously high bids that are bound to go even higher... Be sure to click the images to enlarge, so you can see them in all their crazy glory!

80's Skinny Black Leather High Waisted Pants - Here you see a typical model - super skinny, in heels and oversized glasses. These pants are currently at $90 with 15 bids and 4 days to go. They are being offered by eBay seller Thriftwares, who seems to be a major player in the space.

While nothing screams 1980's like a pair of leather pants, don't these look, well, painful?

80's Metallic Puff Sleeve Blouse - This model is sporting oversized sunglasses instead of regular glasses, and the "I'm so cool I'm bored, and I don't even remember how to smile" look that is apparently a requirement to be a model.

This shirt, which doesn't have a single redeeming quality that I can see, is at $83 with 17 bids and a day or so to go. It is being offered by eBay seller Laced With Romance, who has some of the creepiest photos I've ever seen in their auctions and on the front page of their store. Seriously.

80's Leather Zippered Mini Dress - Where do I start? With the pose I guess, which is apparently all the rage - hands on hips, shoulders rolled forward like you have scoliosis, knees turned in... to me it's got to be the single most unattractive way to stand ever created! Sorry, I just don't get it - a fashionista I am not, apparently!

The dress of course is scandalously short, but shaped like a sack. Seems a little contradictory. The sleeves are interesting though, they definitely give this it's 80's vibe. The high bid is currently $78 with 11 bids and 4 days to go. It is being offered by eBay seller Indie Cult Vintage, who appears to be raking it in, with almost 5,000 feedbacks.

80's Oscar De La Renta Polka Dot Summer Dress - Whoever styled this model forgot to give her her her oversized glasses, but they did remind her to turn her arm out so her tattoo would show, which is a big plus when you are trying to give "edge" to a dress like this one.

By the way - ruffle socks, worn with heels = 80's nightmare.

This lovely is currently at $56 with 11 bids and a day to go. It is being offered by eBay seller Lullie Vintage, who's tagline is "Because You're Not Cut From The Same Cloth". Clever, and if you would wear this outfit, definitely true!!

80's Long Sleeve Shorts Jumpsuit - I hate to feature the same seller, Lullie Vintage, twice, but how could I not highlight this getup? The hat, the glasses, the bizarre (and oh-so-80's) belt, the slouch boots (over thigh high socks?), and of course the jumpsuit itself... I think my eyes are going to roll right out of my head.

Currently at $51 with 3 bids and 7 days to go. I've got it on my watch list, I have to see this final price!

Ok, that's all I can handle for one day... I think I'll have to do a part two of this post closer to prom time - if I remember correctly, eBay was flooded with the ugliest 80's sequined/ruffled prom dresses ever made, and they were selling like hotcakes...

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend


Monica said...

all I can say is WHY and the last one looks 70's NOT 80's

Anonymous said...

say all you want about how awful the items are, but these sellers are clearly doing something right. they've taken vintage items (sure some of them are questionably "vintage" considering when they were made) and given them a modern edge so younger girls will be into them. what's wrong with translating vintage in a way that younger girls can understand and relate to??? clearly the sellers love and collect vintage so who cares if they don't do vintage in the same way you might choose to do it? times change and looking at these prices, i'd say these sellers are resonating with young buyers. sure, i wouldn't wear some of these outfits, but that's not the point.

and frankly, you are right. put these dresses on some mannequin and toss a few pics up on ebay and they won't sell (or not for any real money). models, lighting, accessories, styling, etc are all essential. from the looks of it, i'd say a lot of hard work goes into running those stores.

Mitzi - Vintage Goodness said...

Oh I give total props to these sellers - they have it down pat, they are obviously raking it in and serving a dedicated customer base - but I can't help but make fun of the clothes. The intent was not to make fun of the sellers, like you said they are working hard and are getting the job done!

Newburgh Restoration said...

I agree...when I think back to 80's style, I am reminded of the things my mom wore, and how I thought they were so UGLY! Now, everybody is wearing them b/c they are "vintage." Let another 30 years pass already.

Flim said...

This is a hilarious post. I've definitely been watching these vintage clothing sellers on ebay and feeling a mix of emotion - a little eye rolling, a little jealousy/admiration - and now I'm trying to recruit some modelesque friends (oh, but my friends smile every now and then and don't contort themselves into 90 degree angles) so I can sell some of this stuff too! ;)

Anonymous said...

Ha! I'm like you. I'd never be able to sell something like that - IF I could even find it. It really does take hard work and not a small amount of dedication to get the following these sellers have. Wish I could be them! Hey, I don't mind selling things I don't like. '70s I love. '80s, not so much.

Anonymous said...

Love the Article- I sell on ebay as well and have often wondered how these gals get so much for their stuff- MARKETING and they make the clothing relevant- It is no different than what is featured in Catalogs on models and you buy the piece, get it and put it on and YUK!!! It doesn't fit the same on my size 14 frame as it did on the models size 0 frame.

These sellers are masters at Marketing and presentation.

Incidently, I showed these photos to my dd aged 15 and 17 without any explanation. They said,"I would so wear this and this..", "Not that but it is cute...", "I would wear this if I lived in New York", "I can see Lady GaGa in that". And on it went. I would like to know the demographics of those buyers of those clothes.
Thanks for the post.

Mitzi - Vintage Goodness said...

I'm assuming these kinds of clothes are definitely going to the younger demographic - ladies in their teens and twenties, like your daughters. Not a bad demo to market to - disposable incomes and all that! hehe

And yes I agree that marketing and presentation are key with these sellers, and they have their model down pat!